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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Guest Writer: The State - Prologue

Greetings gentle readers,

As you know, here at The Final Curtain, we encourage people to send in short stories or poetry so we can post them for feedback purposes.  Now, I will admit, I was hesitant about posting this as both Rhiannon Irons and I had given him feedback regarding his story.  However, at his constant insistence with Rhiannon Irons, I have caved. 

Today, we've gotten a prologue of a story from Max.  Max has previously had a poem posted under the nom de plume, Mr. E. 

Now, please keep in mind, this prologue is for an English project that he is working on.  Feel free to leave a comment so he knows what you think.


November 20th, 2099


This is Dr. Maxime Le.

The other researchers and I have found a miraculous breakthrough. We simply want to thank you for investing and making us... here at Le Science Industries, the government’s own scientific research centre and crew.

You’ve demanded we researched something that has to do with genes, genetics, cells... DNA....And we did. We’ve found something; it’s an incredible breakthrough in science and medicine to this day! We’ve discovered that for each cell of the body, a correct sequence of adenine, guanine, thymine and cytosine must be synchronised to create the cell. Only adenine and guanine can be paired together just like thymine and cytosine, but there’s a certain pattern that affects the attributes of the cell. We’ve experimented with the orders on a muscle cell – as to your request – to find out which ones affect which attributes and such.

In your report letter you asked: "See if you can find out how to make a man stronger... faster", we’ve found it. We discovered the sequence making a muscle cell stronger, have more stamina. With the technology we have now, we can extract the four building blocks of this special chain from a strand of DNA, clone them, and create this muscle cell with the attributes you’ve asked for!

I’ve asked my men at the chemistry lab to conjure up a medicinal drug capable of replacing normal cells with the newly, genetically modified ones we’ve created and make them host cells. Quite like a cancer: It fools the human body into thinking it’s a regular cell, but it attacks them and replaces them with its multiplications. Before we continue, I suggest you come see it yourself in action. We’re testing it as I’m writing to you; it’s already been two month now! If our breakthrough proves its positive effects (it seems it has with our tests) and we figure out how to tune out the defects I’m sure it would have –although it will take another month of testing –we can release it to the public! Think of all the benefits!

Dr. Maxime Le
Head of Research and Scientific Advancements.
Le Science Industries

"Mr. President."

He was looking through his old letters, unaware of someone calling him.

"M. President." The voice repeated.

The President looked away from his desk as he set the letter from Dr. Le back to where it belonged: in a folder marked Classified. Looking around seeking who called his attention, he noticed a figure in his office door.

"Pardon my interruption, Mr. President. It seems our ancient enemy... The Vox have come to discuss about the Peace Treaty," said the Secretary of Defence.

"I haven’t been notified of this meeting, we’re perfectly fine! We’ve been in peace for 20 years. I don’t want another civil war Michael; it was terrible enough the first time. Cost billions to the State! What could they possibly want?" The President ranted, surprised about how angry he was.

"Well... it’s a new generation of Vox Rebels, Mr. President," Michael replied with haste.

"What? There’s a new leader at the head?"

The President got out of his seat and walked towards Michael with a low sigh.

"Apparently so, we’ll just have to find out," said Michael, as he walked out the room.

The President followed his Secretary of Defence out his office, making their way to the meeting hall to discuss a new peace treaty between The Vox and the State.

The Vox was an anarchist rebellion group who’ve come up more than a few times in the State’s history books. 20 years ago they threw a civil rebellion. Having military domination and discipline, the President of the State had no choice but to defend. The Civil war did not last very long, but it has been the deadliest and longest one since the very first. Every time The Vox implied a revolution their numbers seemed to have grown and their strategies improved.

The overseer of the military defence against the anarchist rebels personally took down The Vox leader: Steven Flinn and noted his final words: "The State will make a mistake... the survivors will teach the next generation of our efforts, of the State’s wrong, of our reasons... The Vox will son will only know me through our history book... The Vox History Book... and he will thrive..."

At first – because of Leader of The Vox’s last words – the State was on high alert for any Vox activity after a peace treaty has been resolved. 20 years later, this alert has declined to a mere ignorance! The ministry of Education strongly neglected the teaching of The Vox’s actions towards the State. Consequently, only the smallest percentages of the State’s population remember who The Vox are. Now, the President was sitting across The Vox’s new generation leader, both of them surrounded by body guards of their own factions.

"Do you know why I’m here?" said the leader, cockiness and ambition echoed through his voice.

"Look, we’ve done nothing wrong in the past 20 years, what do you want?" replied the President, wanting to get this out of the way as quickly as possible.

"That’s true, in some ways... but it’s not about what you did wrong, it’s about revenge... my personal vendetta. Do you know what I’m talking about Mr. President?" barked the leader.

"I’m afraid not..."

"Your men killed my father!" he yelled, standing up.

The President’s bodyguards snapped out of their surveillance trance and took a more aggressive look, eyeing the opposing faction’s security and its leader with acute attention.

"Just who are you...?" questioned the President, trying to remain calm.

"I... I am Andrew Flinn, son of Steven Flinn deceased leader The Vox! I live in his name... Mr. President, this is war! My personal vendetta fuels every single member of our faction and we will have revenge! Hear The Voice Mr. President... hear our Voice we are... The Vox Populi...The Voice of the People!" Andrew Flinn stormed out the room, signalling his security to follow him.

Stunned, the President told the Secretary of Defence to issue a war declaration and told him to assure the State was aware of this unfortunate event. He went back to his office and sat in his ornate leather chair, rubbing his temples trying to cope with stress, trying to interpret what he was about to get involved in, trying to plan everything. He was going to war with an ancient enemy of the State; he was starting to doubt this was a reality. Was he scared? Was he dreaming? So many questions to answer, but try as he might, more questions were thought of than there were answers.

"Mr. President, someone’s here to talk to you," said a female voice.


"I’m not sure sir. He claims to be..."

The lady read the paper, trying to remember his name.

"To be Dr. Maxime Le from Le Science Industries."

"Ah, yes its fine Lisa, bring him in."

"Yes sir."

Lisa Monroe was the President’s personal secretary. Any letters he received were sent through her and she put them on his desk. Any non-government associated members had to pass through her before being able to enter the President’s office – with his permission of course –and she organised every appointment synchronised with the President’s schedule.

"Mr. President! It’s a very nice office you have here, hmm!" Dr. Maxime Le looked around the room, amazed from the decor and luxury, inspecting every statue, painting or flag with immense curiosity.

He wasn’t a very tall person. He was Asian, with dark brown eyes and black hair. He had the extraordinary mind of a genius and devoted all of his life to science. His politeness was beyond any regular citizen of the State and addressed everybody with the same respect he’d address God if he met him in person; for fear that any wrong action would take him to hell!

Dr. Le was one of the very few people who had a belief that there is a God; he cared not if science –his love and all of his life –couldn’t prove his existence. However, in the State, 98% of the population were Atheists. It was believed that Religion was the base of war, simply to prove which belief was superior and ultimately, which one’s right.

It’s with this mindset that the countries of the world were brought together to improve the peace treaty, assuring it to last much longer. They’ve accepted to limit the worship of any Supreme Being or Deity so that tensions between religious groups would be diminished and eventually disappear.

"Max, have you heard-"

"Yes sir, we’re going to war," Max interrupted.

The President nodded, and signalled his friend to take a seat.

"Oh! I’m so sorry Mr. President I promised it won’t happen again, please forgive me I feel terrible!" the doctor stuttered. He was almost panicking.

"Max, it’s okay. You know I can never get mad at you!" Added the President with a comforting smile.

"Oh, thank you Mr. President. You know me! I get worried about everything," he replied with a sigh. "Well I’ve come to tell you that we’ve tested the gene drug... and it works! But –" He hesitated.

"Spit it out. We don’t have all day! I have a war to settle."

"Right, sorry sir. The enhancements so far have worked. Our test subjects are much stronger, faster and enduring than even the best athletes in the world! But after three months of testing we’ve noticed some defects... skin started peeling off, rotting, bubbling and dying. Major necrosis was found almost everywhere on the skin cells but only on skin cells. We presume the enhanced cells take too much energy that the body can’t produce, so it starts feeding on skin cells –rich in nutriments and full of energy –and destroying them. Quite like when a man is starving, his very own body will start to 'eat' it’s self in order to survive. However, this necrosis and deterioration does not affect the performance. Our test subjects don’t seem to be effected by pain."

"How long does it take for the necrosis to start?"

"Almost three months."

"Right, so you say this makes people stronger, faster and more enduring?"

"Yes... oh no... You’re not suggesting we use the drug on the citizens of the State to overcome The Vox, right!?" Dr. Le said, with panic rising in his voice.

"Does it look like we have a choice Max?" This time the President was frustrated.

"Well I mean... we can out-power The Vox... but what of the consequence? The Necrosis?"

"Find a cure." The President’s eyes locked on to the doctor’s, as if trying to read his soul.

Against his will, and to keep the trust of the President, Doctor Maxime Le added with saddness in his voice "Fine... The cure will take time though."

The President pressed a button on the intercom and told Lisa to summon Michael, the Secretary of Defence.

Once summoned, the President had two of his most trusted men wait while he thought of what he was about to do. He thought a long while and finally he came up with a firm answer:

"Michael, I want you to ensure a Conscription Law. Doctor, I want you to mass produce the drugs and I’ll alert the secretary of Marketing to make sure the drugs are distributed to every non-Vox converted citizen of the State. One more thing Michael, I want every single Vox member annihilated."

"Sir... that’s genocide," Michael stated.

"This is tyranny," the doctor added. "But if that’s what you wish Mr. President, so be it."

The two men left the room and left the President to reflect upon the choice he just made.

Was he really doing this? He had no choice. The Vox have already converted half of the State’s population to join Andrew Flinn’s cause. The State’s army was of even match with The Vox’s rebellious group. With the Conscription at hand, the rest of the men of the State would be forced to join the army, doubling its size. The added benefit of the enhanced cell drug Dr. Le and his team have created; the army would be much stronger, resistant and faster. The Vox
couldn’t possibly stand a chance. He planned it all in his head everything to the minimal detail. His plan was going to work. He was becoming the dictator of the State.


  1. Good idea, timing is good, however it's a bit long for a prologue. Prologues are suppose to be an introduction to the story, not an entire chapter. If you're able to cut it down a bit, then I think it'll be better.

  2. Is this the whole English paper because if so, then I don't have a problem with the length however if this is just the start up, then it's way too long. Prologues are short and to the point. They set the scene for the story. Cut it down a page and it'll be good.

  3. Love the letter at the start. Really caught my attention. The rest I felt was a little too long winded.

    I, personally, would have stopped it at "The President followed his Secretary of Defence out his office, making their way to the meeting hall to discuss a new peace treaty between The Vox and the State." The rest is just surplus.

  4. Different than what I'm use to reading on here, but different in a good way. Is that the end of the story because I'd like to know more about the drug, the war and what the hell the Vox Populi is.

  5. Good effort. Interesting concept but I will echo everyone else and say it was a little long for what is considered a prologue. If it was a little shorter than it would be perfect. Nice job, Max.

  6. Good job Max. Well worded and captivating. Not bad for an English assignment :-)

  7. Some of you are way harsh considering this is a high school kid we're talking about! I think he did a great job. A++++

  8. @Monica - harsh would have been saying that was shit. We gave back constructive criticism in saying it was too long to be consider a prologue. If he didn't want it then he shouldn't have put it up on the site.

  9. @Jon I thought it was fine the way it was and that for a first story he deserves an A for his efforts. I was just saying that we shouldn't be so hard on him because he's young and inexperienced.

  10. Well thank you everybody for the feedback! What you've all told me made me realize a good point: it's way too long. And please, everyone has their own opinions, let's not have an argument on who's right or wrong. Finally, I'm sorry if anything wrote was offensive to anyone.

  11. I liked it. It was different to what we're use to reading on here. Well thought out. Nice work Max.